People on the edge | a poem by Angela Coleman

People on the Edge


Who are the people on the edge?

Many are poor, struggling to make ends meet.

Many are unemployed or under-employed.

Many are uneducated or under-educated.

Many belong to various minority groups within society – ethnic, religious, sexual, gender, or social.

Many have disabilities – physical, mental, and/or intellectual.

But not all are!

Do I hear the people on the edge?


Who are the people on the edge?

They are those who live in the margins of society and on the edges of community.

They often give the appearance of belonging, and frequently do belong; but not quite, either in reality or in their minds.

In some way they are isolated, different and separate, from the majority the community and society in which they live.

They are, at once, both visible and invisible; connected and disconnected; personally and socially dislocated.

But they are not all the same!

Do I see the people on the edge?


Who are the people on the edge?

Some are those who seek answers and meaning to their lives.

Who am I? Why am I? Where do I come from? Where am I going? What do I believe? What do I value? How does this shape my life?

Some are those, who having worked through the questions; find that their values, beliefs, identity and direction are at odds with those of their communities and wider society.

But not all!

Do I know the people on the edge?


Who are the people on the edge?

They are the lost strangers; who seek a place to call home.

They are the remnants of earlier days, visions, dreams, ways of being community; still trying to relocate themselves in the modern world.

They are the creative minds and spirit-filled hearts that seek to create a better world.

They are the mystics and prophets of our time.

They are the fringe-dwellers.

Do I seek the people of the edge?


And how do I respond? And where am I?


Angela Coleman

Written 11/10/14 and 5/10/15